Steer Inn Burgers closes after some 50 years
Richmond Hill turns up in droves to say farewell to burger institution
--There will be no more steaks on kaisers for Richmond Hill. The town mourned the loss of one of its local institutions as Steer Inn Burgers flipped its last paddy Feb. 14. Lineups started before noon and held up for hours, draining the iconic eatery of its food reserves.
The burger joint opened up in the 1960s. Later four partners decided to take up the mantle of feeding Richmond Hill’s hungriest specimens.
Chris Theodoridis, son of Ted Theodoridis, one of those partners, worked in the multigenerational family establishment as a teen and showed up for one last shift.
“We didn’t realize it meant so much to the people of Richmond Hill and the surrounding area,” said Theodoridis.
It was hard life for the four first generation regulars. Chris Theodoridis recalls his dad telling Chris he was “out of here” when he turned 19. He didn’t want the same long hours away from family for his son.
“My dad would do his 9 to 6 shift during the day and then go back from midnight to 3 a.m. on Fridays and Saturdays,” said John Sofos, son of Mike Sofos, another of the founding partners.
Another area burger institution, Golden Star Restaurant, lamented the loss of a fellow classic.
“It’s a sad day,” said manager Julian Doria.
“We’ve both been around about the same amount of time.”
Steer Inn may have served up its final homemade onion ring, but its decades-long presence as a late night go-to for famished bar patrons with inflated appetites will not be forgotten.
“For people to wait an hour and a half in line on a Sunday for a burger, it must have meant something more to them than just food,” said Theodoridis.
Sofos said the land had been sold to developers, but the Town of Richmond Hill confirmed that a development application for 9839 Yonge St. has not yet been filed.
Nick Sofos (centre) trading hats with a customer inside Steer Inn Burger some decades back